Saturday, May 31, 2008

Pride 2008 Snatchel WIP

A friend invited me to go to Pride in Olympia in a couple of weeks. And since Pride in Seattle is the following week, I thought I'd knit up a special bag, the Snatchel. I'll let you go read the description. Come back here when you are done!

Isn't that great! Such a hoot!

Anyway, the ladies at The Yarn Stash in Burien thought so. They were so helpful in getting me the right color of red for the main parts of the bag. A woman was in the store knitting who daily gets a look at the real thing everyday as her job as a nurse. So she let me know which color to use for the upper inner part. :)


Look at the lovely black yarn that Beth gave me while I was there. The yarn smells like lavender and will make a great addition to the bag... I'll let you guess which part! ;)

Right now I'm to the V-word part of the bag. I hope to have the rest of the main part of the bag done this weekend. I'm not looking forward to the miles and miles of I-cord for the handles but it will be good TV and knit night knitting.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

The Perfect Sock Pattern?

I don't know how many different sock patterns I have tried over the last few months. I'd start them and then I'd have to frog (rip, rip) them because there were too many mistakes. I was having a hard time focusing on the yarn overs and SSKs and K2TOGs especially at my knit nights.

Back in February, shortly after my ex left, I posted about a simple pattern to knit because I needed something that didn't require concentration because besides not being able to eat or sleep and crying/sobbing all the time, my concentration sucked.

Emiko, Raven, and Suna all suggested socks with an easy pattern like Stockinette or ribbing.

I went for the ribbing and I thought I would try knitting 2 at the same time on 2 circulars (mistake). That didn't work out for me. I felt like I was going to poke an eye out with the circular I wasn't knitting with. So then I tried knitting 2 at the same time on 2 circulars (another mistake). My circular was a little too small for that but adequate. However, I kept getting ladders on the inside and losing stitches.

It was mindless knitting grant you, but I was so mindless and unable to concentrate and I'm sure crying out of grief sometimes, that there were a TON of mistakes. A TON of mistakes. But I kept knitting thinking that somehow I could live with the holes and the ladders and twisted stitches.

And then I realized that like the relationship that had just ended that I just had to give up on them no matter how much I hoped they would work out. So I frogged them despite the fact that I really loved the yarn, really loved it. It was just the right colors, ocean blues, and it was Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock so they felt great despite looking crappy.

And then I cast on for another pair of socks. But somehow I still haven't been able to knit a decent pair. I'd start a pattern and it just wouldn't go right. They would either be too big or too small or the stitch pattern hard to memorize and I couldn't seem to get gauge no matter how many needle sizes I went down.

It has been very frustrating. But then I thought I found THE pattern, Tidal Wave Socks. Here was a pattern that had a pretty easy stitch pattern to follow and when I knitted it I was able to knit it even at knit nights.

But then last week at my Thursday night Stitch n' Bitch, Beorn asked me if I was working on sweater sleeves. Now Beorn is pretty new to knitting so I figured he hadn't seen too many socks being knit. And yes they were huge but I tried them on and they were kinda loose, but I could live with it right? I just didn't want to start over again.

But then this week at my other knitting group in Renton, I mentioned that Boren had said that my socks looked like sweater sleeves, and everyone agreed! Lauren suggested that I make them knee highs so that I could decrease down to the right size. I like this idea except for the fact I really don't like knee highs and I don't think I have enough yarn to knit socks that long.

I wasn't about to give up on the socks though. And I kept knitting. It is the process right?!? Well, last night I pulled them out to work on and I realized that I hadn't used a smaller knitting needle after the ribbing on the second sock. So it was even bigger then the first one.

Time to admit to myself that it wasn't working out. And so I frogged them. (Ialuixh you should be proud of me!)

Now it is on to another pair of socks. This time it is the Los Manos Locos socks (appropriate huh?!?) that are a knit stitch version of the famous Monkey socks by Cookie A. I cast on a few less stitches because my gauge is 7.5 stitches instead of 9 stitches per inch. But I know how to be flexible, gotta be in this life right?

So my socks kinda represent the grief process I've been going through the last few months. Betrayal/Disbelief/Shock (my socks are okay, how could anything be wrong with them? isn't this like the 100th time I've tried to get them right?), Anger (how can you call my socks sweater sleeves? Can't you tell they are socks!), and Acceptance (okay, these socks really suck and it is time to rip them out no matter how much I want them to work out).

Knitting and life, gotta love it! Neither are perfect (at least mine aren't) but that's okay.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

LYS Tour Details


This weekend was the annual LYS Tour in the Seattle area. There were 24 stores in the tour (out of about 55 in the area). Each store had a daily drawing, a free one skein pattern, and a 10% discount on the yarn used for the free pattern.

I made it to 13 of the stores. I had no expectations of doing all 24. So I didn't feel rushed like some people I've read about on Ravelry.

I didn't buy yarn for all the free patterns. A couple of stores had projects that use $30+ skeins which I think is ridiculous. The stores that used $5 - $10 skeins were my favorites but I did buy some Malibrigo at Knot Just Yarn because I really like their pattern for a felted drawstring bag and who can say no to 10% discount on Malibrigo!?!

Below are the stores, patterns, and yarns. The yarns with a star * are yarns I purchased.

Thursday: 2 stores - I had to work on Thursday so I took a long lunch and went to
The Yarn Stash In Burien (pattern: Lariat with flowers, yarn: Urban Silk*).


After work, I went to Seattle Knitting Co(pattern: Knit Baseball, yarn: Lion Brand Organic Cotton*).

Friday: 6 stores - I took the afternoon off and hit 3 stores in Seattle plus 3 outlying stores. They were: Tricoter Knitting(pattern: Diamond Lace Scarf w/Ruffle Edge, yarn: Filatura Di Corsa (at $30, I did not buy this)), Acorn Street Shop (pattern: Felted Sprint Bag, yarn: Alpine 14 ply wool), Weaving Works (pattern: Crochet Dish Towel, yarn: Southwest Trading Company "Bamboo"), Hilltop Yarn East in Bellevue (pattern: Tulip Lace Shawl, yarn: Alpaca With a Twist), Renaissance Yarns in Kent (pattern: Trellis Lace WashCloth, yarn: Sublime Organic Cotton*), and The Knittery in Renton(pattern: Cable Round Bag, yarn: Cascade 220*)

Saturday: I picked up Charity and Ialiuxh and we drove up to Bellingham and did a total of 6 of the north stores: J&J Needle Arts(pattern, Water Bottle Bag, yarn: Noro Kureyon*)


and NW Handspun(pattern: Fixation Hat, yarn: Cascade Fixation) in Bellinghham, Ana-Cross Stitch in Anacortes (pattern: Fluffy Stole, yarn: Bulky Handsupn Yarn (another $30 skein..pass), Knot Just Yarn in Burlington(pattern: Felted Drawstring Bag, yarn Malabrigo*),


and Wild Fibers in Mount Vernon (pattern: Laura's Floppy Beanie, yarn: Rowan Felted Tweed (They also had their 2007 pattern for a Fixation Headband, yarn: Cascade Fixation*).

In addition to the yarns I purchased for the one skein projects I also bought some sale yarn at Hilltop East. They had Lambs Pride Worsted on sale 1/2 price. I bought 8 skeins. I plan on making a felted bag.

At NW Handspun I bought a skein of Blue Heron Yarns Rayon/Metallic in Raspberry. I think I'm going to make a shawl with this but I'm going to look on Ravelry for other ideas too.


At Ana's Cross Stitch I purchased 6 balls of Debbie Bliss SoHo at 30% off.

Also, while we were in Bellingham we went to Farmers' Market and I purchased a skein of Spincycle Yarns BFL Wool and a pattern for some cable armwarmers. The colorway is called Ursus Horribilis in honor of the grizzly bears. 10% of the price of the yarn went to a grizzly bear protection organization.


The fourth day of the tour was today (Sunday) but I didn't go to any more of the stores. I think 3 days of yarn store shopping is enough!

I had a blast and now I have enough yarn for one skein knitting projects to keep me busy until next year!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

LYS Tour 2008


13 stores from Bellingham to Kent in 3 days. More details tomorrow, I'm whooped!

Friday, May 02, 2008

Getting Lost With Natasha

This evening after work I was headed over to the Admiral district and got turned around and ended up on Harbor Avenue along the waterfront on Alki. I had been wanting to drive by there anyway so I figured it was meant to be. I drove by Salty's and looked at downtown across the water.

Natasha then guided me up California Avenue from there and that is where I saw the most incredible view of downtown Seattle with the mountains in the distance from Hamiliton View Park.

Here is some pictures I took. I wish they had captured how beautiful it was. But I feel lucky that I got to see it.





I'd like to go back there on another clear day to get better pictures and take in the view again.
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Training For Marathon

In February 2005 I walked the Austin Freescale Marathon. It took me nearly 8 hours. Here are my results:

PlaceNameCityOver allChip TimeTotal TimeDiffPace
349Rhonda BellAustin TX18577:35:48.77:41:46.05:57.317:24/M

In my age group, I was next to last finishing, which, of course, should be expected. I was walking, not running. I trained with the Austin Fit walking group. And I also did the Houston 1/2 marathon in January of that same year.

Why am I telling you all this? Well, one of my friends from Seattle SnB knitting, Jenna, is training for a marathon right now. I think the Portland one that is coming up soon. That got me to thinking about the marathon and half marathon I did 3 years ago. Seattle Fit is starting their training program for the November 30th Seattle Marathon the first weekend of June. I think I'm going to sign up. And this time I'm going to run. 8 hours is just way too long to walk!

Anyone want to train/run with me?!?